In Praise of Folly

In Pet Peeves on June 29, 2009 at 10:04 am

In San Francisco taking your baseball glove to a Giants game has become de rigueur. Every time I tune into a Giants game, team broadcaster Mike Krukow (“Kruk” as he is affectionately known to local devotees) applauds those fans who have brought their mitts to the ballpark.  Krukow proudly observes that Giants fans with gloves far outnumber their counterparts in other National League cities, and he always adds that by bringing a glove to the game one attains a certain level of “coolness”.

This is all news to me. When I was a kid the one thing you most certainly did not do was to take your glove to the ballpark. Taking your glove to the game was one of the anti-social behavoirs of adolescence, and if you even so much as thought about it your friends would mock you. And the next time they were going to do something cool, they would probably leave you out. If you could not catch a foul ball with your bare hands then you didn’t deserve the foul ball in the first place. That was the American Macho ideal in action at the ripe age of 11.

When I go to Giants games nowadays and see kids with gloves I really have to shake my head. But I reserve my harshest scorn for the adults with gloves. These are the kids from my childhood with buck teeth and black horn-rimmed glasses, who wore plaid short sleeve shirts and sat at the front of the room for Math. They talked like Sherman and Peabody and never popped their pimples. They are the kids who had no athletic ability whatsoever and if they had a baseball glove it was usually a Montgomery Wards or a Kokona, an obscure brand imported from Japan – before Japanese imports had cachet. Yes….they have grown up… but they are still nerds.

  1. That is too funny. hey, I hear you about the Sherman and Peabody nerd comment. I think kids are okay to bring their gloves, but not grown men. My buddy at the age of 13 almost caught a foul ball hit by Alan Ashby of the Astros, bear handed too, but it bounced off his hands.

  2. Better to lose a foul ball in your bare hands than to catch one with your glove.

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